Hozay is a Pittsburgh rapper whose white-knuckle bars hit like a series of gut punches.
Hozay’s new single, “Baby Boy,” (produced by Pittsburgh’s own Stunna2Fly) portrays an existence teetering on the edge of destruction. The stakes are set immediately. Within the track’s first half-minutes, Hozay raps, backed by a menacing piano figure, “The life I’m living, I’ll be glad if I see 24.” He gets a thrill from the chaos, though; when he gleefully proclaims, “My first drugs turned me out/I wanted to do some more,” he immediately repeats the line, as if reveling in the memory. The intensity only builds from there, Hozay’s voice rising as he rifles through images of shootouts and shows, friends and enemies, until he’s full-on shouting by the end. The whole thing is over in under two minutes, but there’s enough energy here for an entire album.